DIRT DONT HURT: A Feather Quest

I don’t like being cold any more than the next person, but I do enjoy being in the cold just enough to take my dog on a daily walk through the woods and around the yard.

I wish I could say I do it every single day, no matter the situation, but I don’t. There is no resolution here, no determined promise to put in a mile a day. I do fairly well with regularity, but I don’t even think the dog likes it when it’s pouring rain or biting wind.

Winter walks take on a different tone. If it’s frozen, the once wet soil crunches so loud under my feet that during a phone conversation with my mother she asked if I was eating celery with all the noise of my footsteps.

Without the noise of the insects and birds there’s nothing to soften the brittle, crusty sound. The insects are sleeping and the birds are all basking in the sun of southern climates, probably playing shuffleboard and having little umbrella drinks. But not all birds.

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Blue jay conversation a welcome part of her walk

Some birds probably feel the same way I do about being cold and being in the cold. And I’m grateful for these special hardy type that still linger and call out during my winter walks.

The blue jay is one of those birds, and although they can migrate a little, I still see them and hear them yelling at me outside. I like to pretend they are saying, “Hey! Hey, hey!” in solidarity of two creatures enjoying a crisp morning. I always say hello back.

While walking recently I found a perfect blue jay feather just laying in the middle of my path, and there is no evidence for this, but I always feel little lucky when I find a feather. Especially a blue jay feather because it gives me an opportunity to wax philosophic on life, which is a funny thing to do, but then again so is voluntarily crunching through the winter woods.

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Sun on the feather creates a little magic

Everyone knows a blue jay feather is blue, but not everyone knows that when you hold that same feather up to the sunshine, it turns gray. The color disappears. Reposition so the sun is shining on it and not through it and it’s blue again.

Even though I’ve done it a hundred times, I’ll still always pause and move a found feather up and down and up and down, watching this nature’s magic trick and wonder what it’s trying to tell me.

What other things aren’t always what they seem? Take a crunchy walk, sans celery, if you get the chance. Say hi to a blue jay and maybe you’ll be lucky enough to find a feather and see a little nature abracadabra.

This article originally appeared on The Daily Record: McAllister: Nothing like a walk on a crisp and quiet winter day

Source : https://news.yahoo.com/dirt-dont-hurt-feather-quest-104502486.html

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